From the Ground Up

How we increased safety and performance with our fully-integrated autonomous mowing design

Built on Purpose

It’s true for any task: you need the right tool for the job. Sometimes you can get the job done with a tool you have on hand, but that job might not get done properly, safely, or as efficiently as you need it to.  

The same goes for autonomous mowing. It’s a different job than mowing manually. There are safety and performance needs that require a different tool, which is why we built Scythe M.52 from the ground up. This approach let us tackle the unique challenges of autonomous mowing from the get go, rather than force fitting robotic technology into an existing machine. 

Because its cutting-edge software is fully integrated into its commercial-grade hardware, the purpose-built M.52 gives you four key benefits that you won't get from other solutions. 

1. Increased Durability for Commercial-grade Performance

Scythe M.52 is engineered for extreme durability. It is built with entirely commercial-grade materials, like a fabricated 7-gauge deck with replaceable baffles and reinforced casters. The machine's electronics are sealed from the elements to handle the worst weather and transport conditions. And its all-electric design means there are no belts or pulleys to snap or hydraulic lines to leak.

Built-in ultrasonics and reinforced, well-protected camera mounts ensure sensors stay in place and correctly calibrated because even a few micrometers of shift in one of these sensors can compromise safety and performance. Since a rough bump or a brush with a branch risk knocking clamp-on sensors off the machine, we integrated them into the design rather than adding them on as an unprotected afterthought. 

With a 52" deck that handles a wide range of properties, M.52 is specifically designed to tackle the complexities of commercial mowing on its own. If you take the 175 lb operator off a traditional mower, the way the unit moves and mows is drastically different. The design of our physical frame allows M.52 to mow as well as a human but without one riding it. M.52 can stripe on slopes of up to 20º, easily tackle tough terrain, and avoid obstacles better than retrofit solutions because it’s specifically designed to do so autonomously. 

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2. Greater Precision + Control 

With electric drive power, M.52 has something never seen before in mowing: traction control. Similar to how traction control works in cars, the motors on M.52 provide instantaneous feedback on how fast the individual wheels are moving. This helps prevent spin-out in wet or tough terrain and stops the mower from tearing up the grass. The motors are controlled independently so if one starts to slip the other can adjust to keep the mower on track, making for better performance on slopes and rugged ground. 

The faster and more precise feedback that electric motors provide also allows M.52 to adjust its speed based on turf and terrain conditions. The mower can slow down automatically if the turf is thicker in a certain area to ensure the same high quality of cut. Its regenerative braking also gives it greater control when it's going downhill, which traditional mowers with a retrofit approach don't have. 


3. More In-depth Diagnostics 

M.52 knows the blades need sharpening before you do. It will tell operators if the deck is clogging so they can clear it right away instead of cleaning up grass clumps later. It can sense low air pressure and likely even balding tires. Most mowers just tell you total mowing hours, but with its integrated software and electric components, M.52 offers in-depth onboard diagnostics like these that provide much greater detail on the overall health of the system. 

This real-time data can lead to more efficient and informed maintenance schedules that optimize your operations and ensure high-quality mowing. Combined with its dramatically increased durability, M.52 also requires significantly less maintenance, meaning lower costs and less downtime. All of this is made possible through M.52's integrated design.

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4. Easier Crew + Workflow Integration 

M.52 represents the most advanced robotic technology on the market but it is purposefully packaged in a simple design that won’t be a headache to start using. The familiar stand-on form will help crews learn how to use it faster. New operators quickly figure out how to drive it manually when mowing a perimeter or riding across a property, and the intuitive control panel and mobile app make autonomous mowing easy to manage.

M.52’s stand-on design also matches your current logistics set up, easily fitting in existing trailers and trucks. And while it’s made for mowing on its own, M.52 can be driven manually when needed. That's not the case for autonomous-only solutions. Servicing the mower is simple, too, since the deck, blades, and tires of our stand-on are similar to the machines your maintenance teams are already working on.    

Built for Your Business

Our from-the-ground-up approach results in the most comprehensive robotic solution on the market. By bringing advanced robotics technology to commercial-grade equipment, Scythe M.52 offers a seamless solution that will multiply what your crews can do. Learn more at


The Scythe Approach

Offering a deep dive into its design, this is the first in a four-part series explaining the pillars of our approach in developing Scythe M.52. Together these choices result in the most comprehensive autonomous mowing solution with better performance, greater durability, and increased productivity for landscaping crews.


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